Diocese of Portsmouth

    New head teacher commissioned in our cathedral

    25 May 2016

    PUPILS, staff, governors and parents helped to commission their new headteacher at Portsmouth Cathedral.

    Rachael Osborne with pupils from St Jude's Primary School

    Rachael Osborne is commissioned by the Rev Michael Duff, vicar of St Jude's Church

    Rachael Osborne was commissioned in her new role as headteacher at St Jude’s C of E Primary School in Old Portsmouth. She committed herself to value all those in the school as uniquely gifted by God. And she pledged to keep improving the school to make sure children had the best educational experience possible.

    All 400 pupils from St Jude’s, as well as school staff, governors and parents, made the trip to the nearby Anglican cathedral in Old Portsmouth for the half-hour service. They also pledged to support the school during the service, which included prayers led by pupils and songs.

    Canon Peter Leonard, one of the cathedral’s residentiary canons, preached. He likened the headteacher to a chef, with others in the school given different roles in the kitchen. And the Rev Mike Duff, vicar of St Jude’s Church, Southsea, led the commissioning part of the service.

    Afterwards Miss Osborne said: “I first came to St Jude’s five years ago to help with teaching and learning, and I became a deputy head and then acting headteacher when the previous head left in January. There was a rigorous process to find a new headteacher and I was delighted to be given the chance to become the school’s permanent head.

    “I like the fact that there is a creative curriculum at St Jude’s, and nothing is thought to be impossible. I want to keep learning fun, and I want children to run into school with smiles on their faces. There is a very committed team of staff who are very loyal to the children. 

    “I want to build on the relationships with St Jude’s Church and the cathedral and continue its Christian ethos. Its set of values weren’t imposed by a headteacher, but came out of conversations with the whole school community. Our deputy head Izzy Lewis introduced a ‘Big Question’ each week that children could discuss, which really helps them to think about life.

    “I want to keep the school improving, so for instance I’d like older children to work and learn in school in a way that prepares them for the way they will learn at secondary school. 

    “And I’d like to develop the outside learning space, and provide better opportunities for children to achieve their early learning goals. We want our children to be enthusiastic learners, motivated and keen to succeed.”

    Miss Osborne started her teaching career at Northern Parade Junior School in Portsmouth, and then worked at Bidbury Junior School for four years before moving to St Jude’s.